Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Dark Chocolate Caramel Shortbread

First, I just want to say thank you to those who reached out to me in response to yesterday's post.  Your love and concern, from friends and strangers, means more than you can know.  So your reward for your awesomeness is something sweet and delicious!

Today I have another yummy sweets recipe for you.  I modified this one from the original recipe I found over at Doughmesstic, mostly because I don't have the tools required to make my own caramel.  If you do, by all means, go for it!

The first step in this recipe is to make the shortbread.  Here's what you'll need:

10 tbsp. salted butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 egg yolk, whisked
1  2/3 cups flour

*The original recipe calls for orange zest, but I didn't like how it tasted in the shortbread so the second time I made this recipe, I left it out and it was much better (to me).

1.  Prepare a pan with parchment paper in the bottom, leaving some hanging over the edges.  This will make it much easier to remove the bars when they are all finished.  The first time I made these bars, I used my perfect brownie pan, but I found that the bars came out too big and too thick, so the second time around, I used a regular 9 x 13 pan and that worked much better.

2.  Time to start the shortbread!  Mix together the butter, sugar, and salt with a fork in a medium sized bowl.  Add in the egg yolk and mix well with fork.

3.  Add in the flour in small sections.  Use a wooden spoon to mix at first.  Once you have added in most of the flour, you will need to mix with your hands.

4.  Once thoroughly mixed, spread the dough into the bottom of your prepared pan.  Refrigerate for about thirty minutes.  Then set oven to 350 and bake for about 25 minutes, or until the edges start to turn a very light brown.  Allow to cool before moving onto the next step.

5.  For the caramel, if you want things to be easy, buy ready-made caramel.  I used the stuff made for dipping apple slices (found it in the fruit section at the market).  It worked well because it is thick enough to harden, but still easy to spread.  Once shortbread is completely cooled, spread caramel on top of shortbread.

6.  Put pan in fridge for at least a half an hour, or until caramel hardens.

7.  For the chocolate, melt 1 cup of dark chocolate chips and 1/2 tsp. of shortening in a microwave safe bowl.  Start off with one minute, then go to thirty second increments, stirring in between.  Once chocolate is nice and melty, pour it on top of the caramel/shortbread.  Put the pan back in the fridge until the chocolate hardens.

8.  The final step is to sprinkle the bars with sea salt and remove them from the pan.  I was scared second time around that the bars would be difficult to cut without the help of the brownie pan, but with a good knife, they actually cut pretty easily.  It was nice to be able to make them more bite size than these ones that are pictured.

These guys are delicious, but I definitely recommend the smaller size.  This size bar was hard to eat and A LOT of sweet.  Still yummy though!

1 comment:

  1. First of all, what a cool that. Second, I love the way you have the top of the buffet styled with layers :)

    And third, I'm sure they were yummy because they look fantastic.